Western Spotted Skunk

Conservation

Least concern conservation status

Scientific Classification

OrderCarnivora
FamilyMephitidae
GenusSpilogale
Binomial nameSpilogale gracilis

Range Map

Description

The Western spotted skunk is a species of spotted skunk native to North America. They usually measure between 35 to 45 cm in body length and weigh around 336 to 734 grams. Males are considerably larger than females. Western spotted skunks are considered to be one of the smallest species of spotted skunks. 

They are characterized by a black body striped with creamy-white horizontal stripes on the back, on the front of the body and the hind parts. They are short and rounded, with a white spot marked between their eyes. Their tails are rather big and long-haired, mostly black with a white tip. As with all skunks, western skunks also possess a pair of musk glands that open inside the anus and can spray their content through muscular action. They are found in the western regions of the United States, northern parts of Mexico and in British Columbia in Canada. They prefer to live in mixed woodlands, open areas and farmlands. They are primarily nocturnal animals and feed on insects, small vertebrates and berries.